Ibadan Journal of the Social Sciences
Volume 5, No. 1, 2007
Pages 55-72

DOI: 10.36108/ijss/7002.50.0150

Were Public Sector Workers Still Underpaid after the Wage Increase in May 2000?

Alarudeen Aminu

Department of Economics, University of Ibadan


The notion of poor pay in the Nigeria’s public sector is anchored on the existence of higher pay in the comparable private sector and is also premised on the higher real pay levels that prevailed in the past in the sane public sector before the devaluation of the naira. In order to investigate the supposed poor pay in the public sector, the study uses a data set that was collected seven months after the wage review to estimate Mincerian human capital models for urban male employees in the public and private sector. The results suggest that seven months after the pay review, public sector employees should not be described as being poorly paid in comparison with private sector employees. The characterization of the post-May 2000 public sector pay levels as being poor (or not) is based on a comparison of presents wages with the past real pay levels in the public sector Ta cope with an increased public sector wage bill and future wage demand, the study recommends increases in revenue generation, the elimination of ghost workers, retrenchment of redundant employees and the rationalization of government ministries, departments and agencies to make for an equitable and sustainable public sector staff strength/emolument.
Keywords: public sector salary scale, private sector wage

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